Optimizing Images for Websites
If you run a website, image optimization is something that you must familiarize yourself with. Proper image optimization will help to reduce your page load time and help to attract and keep people on your site while boosting your site’s SEO ranking. Images are one of the cornerstones of your website but you should always avoid using original pictures taken with your phone or camera.
While the images that you take using your camera and smartphone may be fine for print material, they may not necessarily be okay to use on your website. You do not need big images with high resolutions on your website as they will significantly slow down your whole site.
If you upload very large images to your website, your website will slow down when those images are viewed by your visitors.
The solution is to learn how to optimise (trim images down to size) before you upload them.
This article explains the two factors that control how big your image files are and provides links to some free or low cost tools you can use to optimise your images.
Optimizing images for the web involves scaling them down both in image size (dimension size in pixels) to fit screen sizes for which the website was built and their file size (in KB kilobytes) so that they can be lightweight without losing any visible definition. This process is quite complex and is done manually as all images are different and automatic optimization tools cannot adapt to different images.
When optimizing an image, you have to take into consideration those two major factors:
1 – Image size – There is no point in using a 4000 pixels wide picture for your site when the it is designed for 1200 pixels and lower. High-resolution images will slow down the load time of pages.
2 – File size – Large images are mainly used for headers and smaller ones for illustrating articles and pages, in line with texts. Those images, when resized and scaled down, get also a reduced file size. Ideally, file sizes should not exceed 120KB and, in most cases remain well below 100KB (100KB = 0.10MB).
The main purpose of optimizing your images is to reduce the size of the picture to the lowest size possible while ensuring that the quality remains as good as the original for the human eyes and computer screens.
There are two ways of doing this:
When you use automatic tools to reduce the size of images, it will help to minimize load time, but you risk lowering the quality of the images too when you compress them. Compressed images will not be very attractive to your viewers.
But with manual image optimization, the image load time will be reduced, while the performance of the image will be enhanced. Manual optimization includes:
- Lossless compression method – In this case, the quality of the image will not be compromised. However, file sizes will still be important and load time will be slow. This will work well for websites which do not use a lot of images.
- Lossy compression method – In this case, the quality of the image will be slightly reduced, but load time will be increased. This is the best approach if your site uses lots of images.
Image size is reduced as a result of some of its header detail being removed. This allows you to save the image in JPG file format (PNG format is only used for logos and graphics because it allows background transparency). You will be able to control the size and detail of each image.
For right image optimization, you need to find a balance between the image format, compression size and image dimensions.
Most photo editing tools have an inbuilt image compression feature which you can use to compress images. There are also online tools that you can use to compress images manually.
You can use these manual tools to compress your images before you upload them on your site. This will help you save space in your hosting account. Your load times will also be shorter since you will optimize each image before uploading it.
This is a 500 x 280 pixels thumbnail of the original picture which has the dimension of 6,240 x 4,160 pixels and a file size of 4,473,642 KB (4.4 MB). Click on the image to see/download the original image in full size and zoom in for details.
And this is a 500 x 280 pixels thumbnail of the same picture which has been fully optimized with a resulting dimension of 792 x 528 pixels and a file size of 87,339 KB (0.87 MB, less than 20% of the original file size). Click on the image to see/download the original image in full size and zoom in for details.
Optimizing all images that are used in a website not only reduces the pages’ and site’s overall load time but, at the same time, offers your visitors a pleasant experience and will also boost your SEO ranking. Use the trips discussed in this article to optimize and scale down your images without compromising their quality. This will leave you with pictures that are still attractive enough to be displayed on your site, plus shorter load times.
Images are everything for a photography website and, if optimized correctly, can show up high in Google Images and link back to your own site.
That can be a considerable amount of traffic that you’d have ignored otherwise.
This guide will explore all the relevant SEO best-practices to help you rank high in Google Image search, as well as explain why it’s worth the effort.
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In 2019, the size of the average mobile webpage is 1.6 MB. Images usually account for about half of the average webpage because they’re so resource-intensive to serve up.
If you’ve never taken image optimization seriously and your WordPress site is slow, then you have the most to gain by doing it right. If your WordPress images are loading slowly, that usually means there is a problem. By focusing on your images, you can prevent a lot of issues related to site performance.
In this post, we’re going to cover why optimizing images is the best place to start when working on WordPress performance optimization. We’ll also go over some tips on how to get started if you need to fix WordPress images that are loading slowly.